A Collaborative Fight against Drug Abuse, Human Trafficking 

Chiemelie Ezeobi reports that for the sixth year running, crime reporters in Nigeria have taken up the gauntlet in championing the cause against drug abuse and human trafficking. This year, to commemorate the International

 Day Against Drug Use And Trafficking, 

Crime Reporters Association of Nigeria 

sensitised 180 students drawn from nine schools under Mushin and Oshodi Education District on the dangers of drug abuse and its attendant consequences 

The International Day Against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking is a United Nations campaign  against drug abuse and its illegal trade. It has been observed annually on June 26, since 1989. The observance was instituted by General Assembly Resolution 42/112 of December  7, 1987. 

In commemoration of this, the Crime Reporters Association of Nigeria (CRAN), for the sixth year running held sensitisation talk to take a stand against the menace. To mark this year’s 2022 drug day, they took stakeholders and guests to Oshodi Grammar School, Lagos, to talk about the menace in the society. 

Themed ‘Addressing Drug Challenges in Health and Humanitarian Crisis’, the panel attracted the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency, (NDLEA) Lagos State Command; Police Public Relations Officer, Lagos State Police Command, Mr. Benjamin Hundeyin; ,National Agency For The Prohibition Of Trafficking In Person (NAPTIP), Lagos State Command; Founder of Action Now Against Drug Abuse, Madam Yewande Iwuoha; and Dr. Isaac A. Olatunde

Project Manager, Global Initiative on Substance Abuse (GISA). 

Schools Involved

Schools involved were nine Secondary and Junior Schools under the Ikeja, Mushin and Oshodi LGAs (Education District 1) in continuation of CRAN’s bid to catch them young and educate them on the ills of the menace. 

The schools involved include Ikeja Junior Grammar School, Ikeja Senior Grammar School, Ikeja Junior College, Bolade Senior Grammar School, Bolade Junior Grammar School, Oshodi Senior Comprehensive School, Oshodi Junior Comprehensive School, Oshodi Senior High School and Oshodi Junior High School.

CRAN’s Decisive Position 

Unanimously, CRAN took a stand against drug abuse and its attendant vices. They pointed out that drug abuse, particularly, among the youths has gone to a state of emergency, as it now gives serious concern to security agencies, parents, teachers and those in authorities.

Calling for more collaborative efforts to check drug abuse amongst the youths, the President of CRAN, Mr Olalekan Olabulo, said the wave of drug addiction has tipped the nation into a boiling conundrum as the youths, especially students and pupils, now abuse drugs everywhere daily.

Olabulo said that CRAN stance in keying into the United Nations programme was to stem the underlying fact that drug abuse and human trafficking have become a horrifying menace that were tearing the fabrics of the society, with attendant effect on the youths.

He said: “The wave of drug addiction that is pervading Nigeria has tipped the nation into a boiling conundrum. The reason is not far-fetched. Youths, especially students and pupils, now abuse drugs. Most of them imbibe substances like cough syrups, Indian hemp and off-the-counter drugs like rophynol, tramadol, diazepam and lexotan, which are controlled drugs that should only be sold after a doctor’s prescription.

“The consequences of these menace have been far reaching across board as it has led to the prevailing cases of banditry, kidnapping, unwanted pregnancies, burglary, broken homes and an upsurge in crime.

“Although the crises is not new, it has become worse, exacerbating into economic, social and physiological crisis, which if unchecked, portends grave danger to the society at large.

“Consequently, the menace is more worrisome to all and sundry because the victims and traffickers of drugs live in the society as neighbours, children, friends, students, siblings and spouses or even parents. 

“Today, the disturbing global phenomenon to which no nation is immune, has spread to many homes as even children are getting increasingly involved in illicit drugs and substance abuse.”

While thanking all the stakeholders that supported this talk, he hoped that all must continue the fight against Drug Abuse beyond this panel discussion.  

Panel Session

In a panel session moderated by Mrs. Evelyn Usman, CRAN first female Vice President and Assistant Crime Editor for Vanguard Newspapers, the panelists drawn from the police, NDLEA, NAPTIP and NGOs harped on the dangers of hard drugs and its effects, especially on youngsters.

While speaking, the Commander, National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) Lagos State Command,  Mr Ayinde Aileru, said  that hard drugs was s posing a great threat to the nation.

The commander, who was represented by Mr. Oke Semai, Assistant Commandant, Asset and Financial Investigations, said that the youths must know the dangers involved in engaging in drugs, urging parents to watch out for some signs in their children, with a view to detect if they were into drugs or not.

“Some of the signs are withdrawal from friends, physical appearance, bloodshot eyes, poor performance at school, changes in physical appearance, sudden wearing of perfume, licking sweets among others.

“Drugs are any substance that get to your body and changes your thinking, behavior, they are controlled drugs and should not be taken without medical prescription,” he said.

The Commissioner of Police in Lagos State, CP Abiodun Alabi, represented by the command’s spokesman,  SP Benjamin Hundeyin, lamented that that drug intake was a major contributor to crime.

“Taking drugs can get you mad, destabilise your future.  Students should shun crimes, remain focus, so that you will not end in prison. Be careful, don’t try to engage in drugs, do not fall for peers pressure, when you start engaging in drugs, it will truncate your future and you will become a nonentity.

“When a minor or teenager commit a grievous offences, he or she will be jail in the juvenile prison except when it is a minor offences,” he counseled.

An official of the National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons (NAPTIP), Mr Taiwo Adeboyega, said that human  traffickers take drugs to sexually abuse their victims. 

“Sometimes, drugs are added to victims’ drinks to make them do what they don’t want to do. Some packaged drugs in their belongings and move them from one location or  country to another,” he said.

Dr Isaac Olatunde of Global Initiative on Substance Abuse said taking hard drugs can affect the central nervous system and brain, adding that “when taking drugs, it affects your reasoning faculty, sense of judgement that will make you misbehave. Be determine to make your future bright, do not be involved in drug so that your tomorrow can be great”.

For Mrs. Yewande Iwuoha, founder of Action Now Against Drug Abuse, many destinies have been derailed for taking drugs, thus, she charged the students not to join them in taking drugs, rather 

“get involved in sports, paintings and other vocations that can even fetch you money.

“Do not be tempted to taste it because if you do, you will get deeper and even become addicted to it.”

At the sidelines, the event which was compered by THISDAY’s Chiemelie Ezeobi with assistance of New Agency of Nigeria’s (NAN) Moses Omorogieva as co-compere, had several highlights including the First Aid Training by South-west Zonal Coordinator of the National Emergency Management Agency, NEMA,  Mr. Ibrahim Farinloye, who sent a team to represent him. 

The students who answered questions were also given several gifts to motivate them to stay true to their resolve to say no to drugs. 


The wave of drug addiction that is pervading Nigeria has tipped the nation into a boiling conundrum..the consequences of these menace have been far reaching across board as it has led to the prevailing cases of banditry, kidnapping, unwanted pregnancies, burglary, broken homes and an upsurge in crime

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